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Although life is starting to get back to normal just a little bit, common errands like going out grocery shopping still seem to be nerve-wracking to most people. During the time of lockdown, the convenience of delivery and pickup seemed like the ideal low-risk situation, and even now lessens the burden and risk of going out. However, while the convenience of these options is something to consider, you may just be paying a higher price.
Although you may be saving time and effort of physically going to the store, some delivery services actually inflate grocery prices to cover fulfillment costs, so you could be paying more for products than just picking them up in-store. Keep an eye out for the fine print while purchasing groceries on the store’s website. Sometimes they will state that they mark up the prices based on the delivery service used. (For example, Instacart uses the markup to pay for their delivery service).
The expediency of online shopping comes with a cost (literally). Just shopping on certain stores online will cost a fee, including delivery and service fees. Plus, you can get charged more for buying alcohol online as opposed to picking it up in the store yourself.
This includes any second-hand apps you may use as opposed to the direct store. There’s also the markup on same-day delivery services. If you want your groceries the same day and are just refusing to go to the store, be prepared to pay a fee to get your order in ASAP.
When you purchase online, you also run the risk of accidentally giving in to “free” memberships which end up costing you more. Read the fine print and do not check off any unnecessary checkboxes while checking out of your online shopping cart.
Aside from the fact that you’ll be paying premiums for quicker/higher demand delivery times, customers will also be adding tips to their charges. Although this is optional, it’s commonly the fair thing to do, especially when they’re essential workers in a pandemic, risking themselves so you can remain safe. With that being said, this charge tends to be defaulted into the sum of what you’re paying. You are able to customize the tip to your liking.
Impulse purchases can be the downfall to a budget, especially when it’s so easy to just put something in your online shopping cart. Try making a list of only the items you need/are missing in the pantry and fridge, so you only search those items. Also, be willing to compare grocery services and find the best deals on services. You may even find coupons with some companies.